Acquired Brain Injury System Navigation of Southeastern Ontario

Attention and Concentration

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Some examples of difficulties with attention and concentration:

  • Trouble paying attention in busy places.
  • Getting distracted easily.
  • Trouble returning to task when interrupted.
  • Not being able to do more than one thing at a time.
  • Trouble staying on task for long periods of time.
  • Not being able to stick with a job until it is done.





  • Avoid distractions.  Find a quiet place to work.  Turn off the radio or TV.   Ask those around you not to interrupt you while you work.
  • Begin with tasks that are short and relatively easy.  Gradually increase the level of time and difficulty as you get better.
  • Pick a time to work when you are most alert, mornings are often best.  Try to get a good night’s sleep.  If you find yourself fatigued after lunch, you may need a short nap to recharge.
  • Get organized before you begin a project.  Making a list of everything you need, and the steps you’ll need to take. Follow a checklist and cross things off as you do them.
  • Ask for some help.  Choose your helper carefully – someone who will be supportive and keep you on task.
  • Do one task at a time.  Carry a notepad with you to jot things down.  That way you won’t have to stop in the middle of a task, you can just make a note and come back to it when you’re finished.
  • Don’t push yourself too hard.  Take short breaks (10 minutes).  Now is not the time to “push through it”.  If you’re having trouble focusing, it’s a sign your brain needs a rest.
  • Don’t rush yourself.  Go slow and steady, and ask yourself often “How am I doing?”



Links for More Tips – click on titles to go to these sites:


Tips for Managing Thinking Problems


Brainline Attention and Concentration



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ABI System Navigation of Southeastern Ontario

303 Bagot Street LaSalle Mews, Suite 401 Kingston, Ontario K7K 5W7


Shannon McCallum, System Navigator
613-547-6969 ext. 165
[email protected]

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